Investor confidence slipped further in October, particularly in the developed world, according to the State Street Investor Confidence Index, released today by State Street Global Markets.
Investor confidence as measured by the index fell 1.9 points to 86.2 from a revised level of 88.1 in September. Broken out by major regions: North America saw confidence fall by 3.2 points to 84.9 from 88.1 in September; European investors’ confidence ticked down just slightly, .6 points to 96.4 from 97.0 in the prior month; and confidence among Asian investors remained positive at 103.3, though this level was down as well, having fallen 4.4 points from September.
The index was developed for State Street by Harvard professor Kenneth Froot and Paul O’Connell, president and partner of investment management firm FDO Partners LLC. It measures investor confidence on a quantitative basis by analyzing the buying and selling patterns of institutional investors. A reading of 100 is neutral—the level at which investors are neither increasing nor decreasing allocations to risky assets.
“This month saw institutional investor confidence continue to ease further,” Froot said in a press release. “Looking at the underlying data, institutions have been allocating away from developed markets and towards emerging markets.” He added that the “net of the two flows has been negative.” This continues a trend that started in August, he said in the release.
“Similar to last month, we see continued reticence on the part of investors to invest in the major economies,” said O’Connell. “The euro region did receive some flows during the month, but flows to the US, UK, Japan and Australia were generally anemic. The most attractive destinations for institutional flows over the month were China and India, reflecting that growth appears more compelling to investors in these regions than in the core developed markets.”
The index differs from survey-based measures in that it is based on the actual trades, as opposed to opinions, of institutional investors, according to State Street Global Markets.